It’s been a while since I posted, and for that I apologize. Work has been very busy, and the holiday season proved to be a very fun and lucrative one, both professionally and personally. I’m still working at my long-time clinic as well as the day spa, and I have to say that both are very different.
I am still getting used to how things work at the newer place, including the politics of navigating relationships with massage therapists who have been in the game for longer than I have been alive. I’ve found that there is a weird sense of entitlement and snobbery among those who have been practicing since the late 60’s, 70’s and early 80’s, at least with a few of the therapists that I’ve come in contact with. They seem to want to tell everyone exactly how they like to do things and that clearly since I do look young, I obviously have no idea what I’m doing. It’s simultaneously insulting and helpful…sometimes. Most of the time, it’s just insulting.
For example, last night I was subbing in a shift, which included a couples massage smack dab in the middle of the shift, which is fine. I’m used to doing couples massages, actually I enjoy them because it usually affords the opportunity to learn something new from other therapists.
Anyway, so my partner therapist walks right into my treatment room, where I’m setting up from my last session which had just ended, and says,”We have a couples together in ten minutes”. I smile at her, nod and say ok, not pausing during my sheet-folding because I know I have someone right after our session together. She’s still standing there, arms crossed. “I expect to start on time and to end on time.” I nod again and say as brightly as I can,”yep, that’s the plan! I’ll be there in a minute!” She finally leaves. I show up to the couples room with five minutes to go before we are going to go together to pick up our people, and she looks at me (as if I can’t read the super-sized clock) and goes,”Five minutes,” holding up five fingers. I simply nod as I check around the room to make sure I know where all the necessary supplies are. As we are walking down the hall to the reception area, she says, very matter-of-factly,”Clients don’t like a lot of chit-chat during their massages, just pressure-checks, and that’s it.” I nod dumbly and walk behind her to go meet our clients, since obviously she believes she’s in charge of the session.
The second she meets them, she acts like she’s known them forever. Joking about ‘oh, is this your anniversary? hot date? haha!’. It takes several minutes of enduring this JUST TO GET THEM INTO THE ROOM. I very quickly go over things with my client, explaining how things are going to go and where to put his clothes, as well as the typical intake and expectations. My part is done very quickly and I’m left standing there making awkward small-talk with my client while the other two are just chatting away. Finally, we are both able to leave the room. When we re-enter the room, I note to myself that we are in no way starting on time like she wanted to, and she seemed perfectly fine with it.
The whole massage session is perfectly pleasant, despite the constant talking between my partner and her client, which obviously went against her whole ‘chit-chat’ warning earlier. Knowing her control issues, I figured I’d just keep working until the time when I assumed we’d stop, spending extra time on the feet just in case she actually wanted to give them their full hour. Luckily I did that, because two minutes before time was ending, she gave the ‘wrap it up’ signal. I finished up, told my client time was done for the evening, checked in on how he was feeling, and left the room. She came out shortly after, and said,”Wow, you were very quiet in there”. I just shrugged, smiled and said,”Well, I like to let my clients lead the conversation”.